Each gas grill has a rating known as BTUs-British Thermal Units – a measure of the amount of heat the grill can generate. More and more grill manufacturers are pumping out grills with ever higher BTU numbers, and consumers rely on these numbers as a measure of the grill’s performance. So, what’s the deal: Are BTUs really important?
I’ll go ahead and say no: our two best grill picks had fewer BTUs per square foot of cooking surface than the competition, produced evenly cooked food and offered a more enjoyable cooking experience. In fact, one of our least popular grills had the highest BTUs in the group!
BTUs don’t necessarily give you a good measure of how the design of the grill affects the cooked food. It’s also important to remember that higher BTU grills burn faster through propane, and if the lid isn’t firmly attached to the grill, all the heat won’t stay in anyway.
At the end of the day, BTUs are simply an indication of how much heat your grill can produce, not how hot it actually gets into your grill. So, look at the number if you want, but don’t put too much stuff in it.
Tips for the gas barbecue test
1. Consider the convenience
Some cars have two wheels and two feet, so you need to lift one side to move the grill. It is nice to have wheels or castors on all four legs.
Look for an electronic igniter that relies on batteries to generate a spark and that glows lighter than a rotary and push button starter.
3. See construction
Do you like the look of stainless steel? You might not stay long at this price. That’s because not all stainless steel is the same. To keep prices low, manufacturers tend to use thin gauge stainless steel, which can result in a weak grill that looks good in the showroom. Not using stainless steel for a well-done, lacquered or porcelain-coated enamelled steel could give you a grill that lasts longer.
4. Check the grill. In this price range, the parts are usually screwed together, not welded, so make sure they are tight. The fewer screws, the better (screws can rust).
5. Lift the grids and check what they are made of. Porcelain-coated cast iron can flake and rust. With stainless steel gratings you do not have to worry about chipping or scratches. And both are better able to produce and maintain even temperatures than the light wire mesh we have seen on some models.
6. Burners are the industry’s most replaced part, and a warranty of one year or less is an indication that a grill for this world could not last long. In this price range, warranties typically last one to five years; favour the grill with the longest warranty you can find.
7. Check for strength
A thin grill will bend or bend when you move it across your patio or pull it from your deck into the garage to store it in winter. And the robustness can vary depending on the grids you screw together. Lift the lid halfway and push it from side to side to see how much the frame twists. Make sure the wheels are firmly tightened.
Gas or charcoal – How do you decide?
In the eternal debate about whether a gas or charcoal grill is better for outdoor cooking, there is no wrong answer. If you prepare your food on the grill and not indoors, it will capture this beautiful charred essence and smoky taste when cooking over an open fire. You probably already have strong opinions about gas versus charcoal and we are not here to change your mind. If you are still on the fence on this subject, however, here are the pros and cons of using any type of grill to help you choose the right one for you. Let’s talk about gas grills first.
Gas grills are more convenient than charcoal grills. Not using charcoal as fuel not only makes it easier to clean a gas grill (no ash!) but also shortens the initial heating time. The fact that gas grills are equipped with electric starters or an ignition wheel to ignite the gas burner helps you cook faster than charcoal users can. It’s easy to control the heat more easily when grilling with gas than when using charcoal; to adjust the heat up and down, just turn a knob instead of fiddling with hot coals. It’s a hammer when you run out of propane, but we love these newer grills that have a practical meter right on the side of the grill.
Charcoal grills, on the other hand, are much cheaper than their gas counterparts. Many people prefer the taste of cooking over a charcoal grill because the briquettes they use for fuel add smoky elements to the food. The coals produced by burning these briquettes can burn hotter than propane or natural gas, which can be a pro or a fraud: You’ll get a serious burn on your food if that’s what you want, but it’s also easy to burn your food above 700°F.
Choosing the gas is a relatively simple decision.
Choosing the gas grill to buy is much more difficult. From big brand names like Weber (including our favorite Weber Spirit II E-310 (available at Amazon for $449.00)) to the general grills that pop up every spring at your grocery store, there are hundreds of options to choose from.
Before you run to the hardware store to buy a new gas grill, you should know that there are many more grills than you will find in a store. We have broken down the best gas grills on the market by price so you can find the perfect gas grill for you. While many of these gas barbecues are easy to find, try looking for the best barbecue in specialized barbecue shops. Updated for 2019.
It’s not really the smell of the food.
Of course, it’s the smell of the burning fuel that somehow feels more authentic and could even bring back memories of Dad or Grandpa standing over the grill with a can of lighter fluid in one hand and a grill fork in the other. Of course, the rest of the charcoal grill isn’t that special – at least not in a good way. Apart from the lighter liquid, there is the heavy bag of charcoal, the long wait for the charcoal to reach the cooking temperature, the uneven heat of charcoal burning unevenly, and the messy (and somewhat disgusting) task of unloading the ashes and washing the grill after the food has been cooked. Let’s not forget the fight to light the charcoal in windy weather.